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Monday, 19th January 2009
In General Japan News,

Obama city government 'swamped' with gifts

The government of the Japanese city of Obama has been deluged with gifts from the country's admirers of Barack Obama who will be inaugurated as the 44th president of the US tomorrow (January 20th).

Among the gifts sent to the city government were 50 blue ceramic bells, each measuring eight centimetres in height and marked with the name Obama, reports the Asahi Shimbun.

While some of the gifts are intended for the government itself, others arrived with requests to be passed on to Mr Obama.

The city has been following the rise of the former senator for Illinois from the early stages of the Democratic primaries to his historic victory over Republican rival John McCain.

Japanese prime minister Taro Aso has said he will seek to strengthen his country's ties with the US when the new president takes office.

"Strengthening the alliance with the new administration is obvious," he commented, adding: "Robustly formulating it would benefit the national interest of both countries."

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